Phillip Schofield has spoken candidly about the pressure he faced as he came to terms with his sexuality.
The popular television presenter, 58, has admitted things got so difficult he struggled to head into ITV Studios on some days to present This Morning.
On another occasion, he had to run off set to be sick, with the difficulties seeing Schofield realise he had to come out publicly.
In his new book Life’s What You Make It, Schofield said: “I had to come out. If I didn’t, the secret was going to give me a total breakdown . . . at best.”
Things came to a head for the star when he heard a voice in his head say: “You’re f***ing up everything and everyone and there’s no way to stop it” as he headed into the studios to prepare for an interview with Annie Lennox.
“It was the first time my issues had spilled over into work,” Schofield wrote.
“Another day I had to leave a fashion item to be sick. I now knew that I needed professional help.”
As his mental health became increasingly worse over the Christmas period, with Schofield explaining he went to “the darkest of places” as his weight fell to just 9st 12lbs, he had therapy and took medication, leading the star to ultimately decide to come out in February this year.
While his wife of 27 years Stephanie offered Schofield her full support of the news, his co-presenter Holly Willoughby also helped.
After he revealed he was gay in a dressing room, Schofield described how Willoughby found a white feather outside the door.
“She picked it up and gave it to me. ‘See,’ she said. ‘It’s all going to be ok.’ The feather is in my wallet,” Schofield wrote.
After fears the news of his coming out may lead to “a wave of hatred”, Schofield has since explained that many people have been supportive of the news.
“I have cried an awful lot in the past few months. I hope this will now bring some relief,” he told the Sun on Sunday.
“But my main priority is looking after the most important people in my life.”